EU revises energy labeling for household appliances, lighting products

Companies supplying to the European Union should become aware that the EU on January 1, 2019 revised its energy labels for household appliances, lamps and lighting products to make labeling easier to understand and more clearly reflect current market conditions.

EU Regulation 2017/1369: Establishment of a New Energy Labelling Framework was passed in July 2017 and abolished the previous energy labeling regulation Directive 2010/30/EU, according to accreditation and testing company SGS.

EU Regulation 2017/1369 states that from January 1, 2019, the acronyms A+, A++ and A+++ shall be eliminated, and the original categories of A to G shall be reintroduced.

The EU introduced energy labels A to G for household appliances, lamps and lighting products in 1994. This rating system was meant to clearly show the energy efficiency of the product to allow consumers to make informed choices when buying new electrical products.

But as the industry made considerable improvements in energy efficiency, the EU tried to address these changes by introducing the A+, A++ and A+++ acronyms.

This eventually presented a problem for regulators as they had to continually add “+” signs to the A to reflect the ongoing improvements, which reduced the labels’ effectiveness.

With the new regulation, the EU has reintroduced the energy label format of class A to G for uniformity, eschewing a mix of A to G and the A+, A++ and A+++ format.

New-style energy labels will begin to appear in stores, depending on the product category, from August 2, 2023, and their roll-out will be complete by August 2, 2030. The first devices to adopt this label will be washing machines, dishwashers, televisions, refrigerators, lamps, and washer-dryer machines.

The regulation also requires, as of January 1, 2019, the creation of a database of products to enable supervising authorities in member states to enforce labeling and information requirements. Manufacturers are required to load onto the database information relating to any product subject to energy labeling conditions. This database will make it possible for suppliers to review traceability and access technical documentation.

For products launched between August 1, 2017 and January 1, 2019, suppliers shall, by June 30, 2019, enter in the product database the product-related information. From January 1, 2019, all new products must be registered before marketing.

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